What country are you from and where do you live?
Title of what you do/company you work with?
Co-founder, Brooks & Brooks.
Education background (Hair school, art school, no school)?
I trained as a theatrical make-up artist and was involved in dance from an early age. I joined Trevor Sorbie at the age of 20 not really wanting to be a hairdresser, but very quickly I knew that it was the right career for me. With so much diversity it allowed me to explore different creative visions In my head. I qualified as a hairdresser at Trevor Sorbie and worked my way through the ranks of head junior assistant, manager and my favourite role as an Art Director. After twelve amazing years, I decided to venture out and open Brooks & Brooks and see what challenges and opportunities awaited me.
What is your signature style/artistic expression?
I love simplicity with a twist. I love not only the end result, but the thought process behind it. Doing something is easy but thinking of the idea is the challenge. Creating something that looks simple but is actually difficult is what challenges me; trying to be original and challenge myself is what keeps me inspired. Never being satisfied with just OK is never an option.
What was your career turning point/your big break?
I’m not really sure there was one if I’m honest – I never think that I have made it! I am never fully fulfilled unless I do something that takes me out of my comfort zone. Winning awards has been amazing, but it is not what challenges me. It is more pushing myself to create something new that is more important; I think as a Hairdresser everyone has a different goal it’s what makes this industry so amazing – I’m not sure I’ve achieved mine yet! I made a documentary last year, The Journey To My Destination, that pushed every challenge and obstacle that I had to overcome from the start of it to the very end and is probably the thing I am most proud of – when you have brick walls put up it’s a challenge but something I love.
What was your scariest and proudest moment in your career?
The scariest moment for me was inviting 100 VIP guests for a screening of the documentary – and not actually having anything to show anyone until five minutes before the actual screening! The proudest moment for me was the day we opened the salon and seeing the team succeed. There is nothing prouder than interviewing someone and listening to their goals and seeing them get there; it will always be something that a boss finds the proudest.
What is next for your career goals?
I have some things that I haven’t done yet. I would love to make part two of the documentary. I would love to collaborate on a book, but most of all I want to always do something new. My career goals are to see my team run my salon in a new and exciting way that I can mentor but free up some me time to ‘experiment’ in things that challenge me and our industry.
What advice would you give to someone starting out in business?
Work in your salon! When you work alongside your team, you are one of them, you are all in it together.
Sally Brooks has been named Fellowship Hairdresser of the Year at a glittering lunch in London.
The Fellowship for British Hairdressing’s Luncheon & Awards was held at the Intercontinental Hotel on Park Lane and recognizes the best of British hairdressers, who work tirelessly for the industry both creatively and in business.
Amongst a host of awards presented by President Ken Picton and Chancellor Ashleigh Hodges, was the ultimate accolade, Fellowship Hairdresser of the Year.
Sally, owner of Brooks & Brooks salon in Holborn, London, with Jamie Brooks, has won some 60 awards with her creative team including London Hairdresser of the Year three times and British Hairdresser of the Year 2017 and 2018. Sally collected her award to rapturous applause from the audience who included her friend and mentor, Trevor Sorbie.
“This is such a surprise but I’m delighted to be named Fellowship Hairdresser of the Year. It’s been an incredibly busy year which has included producing and directing my documentary, The Journey to My Destination. I have a lot of things planned for the industry in 2020 so watch this space!”